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Armadillos can be very destructive to lawns, flower beds, gardens, and other cultivated areas. This is because the armadillo's preferred foods are the insects, grubs and other small invertebrates (like fleas and spiders) that live underground. Major devastation can occur as the armadillo seeks food by digging numerous small holes and by burrowing in trenches up to 25 feet long.p>
These tank-like pests can also harm ornamental and fruit trees, especially when their hopeful foraging causes permanent damage to root systems. If they burrow under sidewalks or slab foundations they can even upend a shed or severely damage your walkways!
The first line of defense is to eliminate the armadillo's food source: Grubs and other insects living underground. Armadillo problems are often coincident with grub infestations in lawn and other turf areas. Treat these infestations with an application of beneficial nematodes. Heterorhabditis bacteriaphora. are the variety of insect-killing nematode which is best suited to undisturbed and/or higher clay content soils, like lawns and around buildings. Steinernema spp. are better suited to controlling infestations in more cultivated and/or sandy soils. Grubs (the larvae of beetles) can also be controlled with beneficial nematodes. If your problem is the Japanese beetle, a longer term solution would be an application of Milky Spore, a bacterial disease which only effects the larval or "grub" stage of these pests. Beneficial nematodes and Milky Spore can be used in combination, apply Milky Spore first and follow with the nematodes. The nematodes will help distribute the Milky Spore more efficiently.
Eliminating the food source of the armadillo may take several applications, so be patient and persistent. After the food supply has been disrupted, the armadillo might actually burrow MORE for a short while until it realizes the food source is gone and it must move on. Be patient and remember they will move on.
For control products and more information please see our Animal Control page.
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